1 - Most people do not believe in mind-reading as fact but they are more likely to believe you can read body language or influence behavior. To assist with this, set a mood and enhance your tricks by dressing them up as psychological illusions.
• Dress appropriately in dark or black clothes
• Illuminate the room with candle-light
• Subtly suggest you are picking up on unconscious body language such as micro-expressions of the facial muscles, tone of voice, body stance and hesitation.
2 - Despite the descriptions used in the booklet, as far as your audience is concerned you are not performing tricks or illusions.
• You are demonstrating effects not tricks
• You are conducting experiments
• Don't rush any of your effects. It is much more dramatic and realistic to slow things down and reveal your predictions or revelations piece by piece. In our Book Test, for example, rather than reciting the whole first sentence, only a couple of words are revealed first. Then the whole first line is written down with each word being deliberated over to maintain the illusion of mind-reading and to build suspense.
• Forget about it! These are experiments, so if things don't go to plan then simply move on. When things go wrong, compliment the spectator; say they were difficult to read and/or manipulate. Not only does this make them feel good but it also indicates to the rest of the audience that what you are doing is real rather than magic!
5 - Enjoy the Experience!
• If you enjoy yourself your audience will too. Don't embarrass your spectators or audience; don't make them look foolish and don't blame them if things go wrong. If a trick doesn't work out the way you planned its not their fault - its yours. Learn from the experience, practice, practice and practice some more until you have perfected the art of Easy Mentalism.
• Unlike other forms of magic, Mentalism absolutely relies on getting spectators to assist you with your experiments. Getting your first volunteer to join you on stage to assist can be the most difficult part of the act. When choosing a spectator, look them directly in the eye and say "You Sir -would you come up here please?" Phrase this as a command rather than a polite request and follow it quickly with "Give him a round of applause, please" even before he is out of his seat. When you volunteer is up on stage, shake his hand, lean in and say "Thanks for coming up. Don't worry, I won't embarrass you or make fun of you. We're just going to have a bit of fun ...". Having said this, stick to your word and further volunteers will be less difficult to find.
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